Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Head Rush & Nitro Head Rush Upgrade Paths & Attack Damage Numbers

Head Rush is an Earth Element Trap Master who looks like a Viking version of Stealth Elf.  With her Nitro counterpart, we are able to explore both paths freely.  My initial impressions from Head Rush was that it was a rather unique way to bring another female Skylander into the mix, and given her name and Traptanium Horns, I had high hopes she would bring an element of speed AND the classic, brute strength to the Earth Element.

I feel like before we begin, I need to disclose some information.  Nitro Head Rush does have a stat boost, but not where you would want it.  Nitro Head Rush has an Armor Rating of 72, which is +24 over her standard counterpart.  This, however, comes at a price…a price to the tune of -40 in Health.  Yep, you read right.  NHR sports a Health rating of 300, while Head Rush boasts 340!  The key element I was hoping to have increased, Speed, is sitting at 60 for both characters.  Critical Hit is also shared at 10.  I love the Armor Boost, but I feel like the Health offsets it considerably…it basically takes what would be a great advantage, and almost levels it out.  If I had to pick, I would still take +24 Armor over +40 Health, but it is a trade off I’d rather not be forced to take.  I’m not sure why we couldn’t have had a Nitro Head Rush with perhaps +12 Armor and +12 Speed.  The Speed, being a “Nitro” variant, just seems mandatory.  That said, it is what it is…let’s take a look at the attacks.

Head Rush’s Traptanium Horns are a simple, straight forward force.  She can head bash (tap), or dash (hold).  The damage numbers are respectable at 65-97 and 30-45 while dashing (the dash lasts roughly 5 seconds).  Stomp does great damage and is just really cool to me personally.  I really like the impression of the crater she creates while stomping.  Stomp has no “jump” attack at this point, but you can execute the head slam…sadly, it does no additional damage (now or fully upgraded).

Head Rush Base Upgrades

Head Rush has very nice base upgrades.  Mega Stomp offers up a 1-2-3 combo that finishes off with a 200-300 devastater.  Yodel is her tertiary attack and adds a nice, uniqueness to her move set.  “Stomping on Air” allows us to jump and pound the ground for a 100-150 dealing of damage…I found myself using this quite frequently while playing with Head Rush.  Charge Control effectively doubles the length of the charge from 5 to 10 seconds.  It  also bumps the Head Slam damage from 65-97 all the way up to 92-138, which I thought was very impressive for not being path specific.  The charge damage also goes up, but it can do so incrementally depending on how many times you cut and turn….It will max out at 86 (129 Critical).  Please note in the spreadsheet I just include the standard attack damage number as Critical Hits from her are abysmally low (guess that 10% rating is optimistic, lol).

Head Rush Lungs of Steel Upgrade Path

I chose this path for regular Head Rush because I wanted Nitro to have a chance at speeding up a bit down Stomp Harder.  I will also concede that I thought “Forget Breaking Glass” was going to be a killer, screen cleaning upgrade.  We start off with “High Note” that takes the Yodel (40-60) and elevates it to 52-78.  “Modulate Yodel” offers you the ability to change the pitch of the Yodel and more importantly sends the attack damage up to 68-102.  “Forget Breaking Glass” takes damage from the Yodel to a max of 85-127 and finishes off with a few 136-204 bursts.  My main interest was the ground breaking, boulders flying up, and smashing down on things.  This does happen, but very slowly and I never saw damage surpass what the yodel does…I was honestly hoping for some torrent of boulders to cascade down upon enemies all over the screen WITH extra damage.  Maybe I over hyped it.  The attack is good enough with just the base increase, but I feel it could have been really great with my desired additions.

Nitro Head Rush Stomp Harder Upgrade Path

I took Nitro down this path because the strat guide mentioned increased speed and I was really optimistic.  You do speed up, but it is only when cutting and dashing…there is no majestic +8 or +12 to add to the base stat of 60.  That said, this is a pretty cool path in my opinion.  “A Stomp to Remember” bumps the standard stomp all the way to 108-162!  Similarly, the combo deals 108-108-280 with a critical ensemble being 162-162-420!  Power Steering had me worried because I’ve seen attacks before that mirror a base upgrade and they usually disappoint.  This one offered the same escalating damage, but up a bit.  You take the charge from 43-53-64-75-86 up to 43-61-80-99-118!  Both sets have critical numbers, but you just don’t see them often.  “Omega Stomp” finishes things off with a really nice 140-210 and 140-140-364 Combo (210-210-546 Critical).  You can also take advantage of damage while jumping.

Head Rush Attack Damage Numbers
(Click to Enlarge)

Soul Gem

Head Rush’s Soul Gem offers up an upgrade to her Primary Attack that hasn’t been addressed since “Charge Control” in the base upgrades.  The head slam moves from 92-138 all the way up to 130-195!  This is  a huge boost for either path!  The charge also sees increased damage, but it is much greater if you already have the increases from “Power Steering.”  Just to compare,
Lungs of Steel + Soul Gem = a dash string of 60-75-90-105-120
Stomp Harder + Soul Gem=a dash string of 60-86-112-138-165


Head Rush is a unique Trap Master and one worth owning.  The base upgrades are very well rounded and leave her with a solid 1-2 punch and unique 3rd attack.  If you are a fan of the yodel, or opera type stuff, Lungs of Steel is for you.  The yodel winds up doing decent damage and in a respectable radius.  I would not consider it “long range” but it would certainly be justified as a good midrange option.   If you hate the yodel, or prefer dash attacks, I would go with Stomp Harder.  The path just delivers good increases at each upgrade interval.

There is also a significant variance in paths here.  Yodel is more of a remote attack.  I don’t want to say defensive because you are frozen while yodeling and enemies can survive the damage on higher difficulty settings, or if they are hardy enough.  If you are a timid player, or like safety over risk, Lungs of Steel is the way to go.  If you are more of the aggressive type who just likes to get in, smash buttons, and see what happens, Stomp Harder is the way to go.

Personally, I prefer Stomp Harder.  I’m a fan of speed, the incrementally increasing damage is a cool twist, and I just love the craters generated from stomp.  I also still hold a little animosity for overhyping “Forget Breaking Glass.”  Either way, Head Rush offers two relatively diverse paths that turn out to be quite contrasting.  I just feel that the Stomp attacks, head bash, speed from the dashes and that sweet boost from the Soul Gem favor Stomp Harder…plus, I don’t really get into opera stuff…That said, Lungs of Steel remains her most unique outlet.  Those craters from stomp though…so cool!

Currently Playing

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